Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:November 5th, 2006 07:41 EST
Meeting the terrorist challenge Speech by the Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP

Meeting the terrorist challenge Speech by the Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP

By SOP newswire

There should be no safe haven anywhere in the world for terrorists.

Equally there should be no hiding place anywhere for those who finance terrorism.

And today I want to announce the framework of a new regime we are developing nationally and internationally for rooting out terrorist finance.

And I want to set out the framework too that Tony Blair and I have agreed for how our Comprehensive Spending Review will give priority to discharging what is the first task of government " the security and safety of the British people 

Let me explain the context of our new measures.

If the allegations turn out to be proved, which of course is a matter for the courts to decide, on August 10th our security and intelligence services and police thwarted an alleged conspiracy more audacious and potentially more murderous than anything Britain has seen before.

But August 10th was not the first threat since the events of July 7th 2005, when 24 men and 28 women were so tragically murdered on the trains and buses of London.

And it is only through the painstaking efforts of our security and intelligence services and police, with what has been reported publicly as many as five separate suspected conspiracies thwarted since July 7th, that more atrocities have been averted.

And sadly the threatened attacks have much in common - with the majority linked to Al Qaeda, each one of them not a gesture, but designed to ensure maximum damage; the majority appearing to involve home grown suicide bombers, who would kill themselves to maim or kill fellow citizens. And each one raises the hard questions a vigilant government and a vigilant country have to answer: what more can we do nationally and internationally to protect our national security; what more we can do to isolate terrorist extremists from the moderate mainstream; what more we can do to defeat terrorist violence in all its manifestations.

In 1997 the terrorist threat to Britain focused on the IRA.

Now we face, in Al Qaeda, the first terrorist organisation with truly global ambitions.

In recent years Al Qaeda and the groups that they have inspired have attacked over 25 countries, killed thousands of people --- many of them Muslims -- and when we talk of networks across all continents we are describing a reality that that money is invariably raised in one country, used for training in the second, for procurement in a third and terrorist acts in a fourth - and the results broadcast in propaganda across the world.

In the last century, the main province of foreign policy was that nations had to guard against threats form other nations. And these threats still remain " demonstrated clearly yesterday by North Korea`s irresponsible action, which our Government and the whole world condemn completely.

But now also we see how small groups of terrorists can cause carnage: enemies who do not need great armies nor, in practise, large amounts of money, weapons, or technology to put lives at risk; enemies without even a recognised formal chain of command, but enemies who can inspire imitators in the heart of our communities.

And so in addressing these new threats for whom there is no real precedent we are forced to consider every means, every necessary resource - all methods of diplomacy, all means of intelligence, all tools of law, policing and our security and military forces " in order to discharge our first duty: to protect our citizens.

And in the face of this new threat it is right that at each stage we scrutinise the policies we have, the structures we have in place and the resources we have available and ask to what extent for the future challenges we have to meet they are fit for purpose --- not just to contain this new threat but overcome it.

Of course all the great challenges of today`s new global society " from global economic competition to climate change " are important, but upon meeting and overcoming this challenge of global terrorism all else we value depends. So John Reid, the Home Secretary, and I have agreed that examining in detail the delivery and impact of our counter-terrorism resources will be a priority for the Comprehensive Spending Review over the next year. This will include considering again the case for a single security budget, an annual updated statement setting out the country`s national security strategy.

And today as we set in place our Comprehensive Spending Review I want to chart what we will do immediately to address terrorist finance; explain how, as a nation, we are improving the security of our own country in a comprehensive and cohesive way across military, security, intelligence, finance but also across culture and what underpins our comprehensive review; and also set out how we must address the roots of the problem - the grievances that terrorists exploit, and, crucially, the underlying despicable ideology that glorifies terrorism as an ideology.

back to top

Terrorist financing

First, terrorist financing.

In July, the government published its Counter-Terrorism Strategy setting out the steps we are taking.

Two weeks ago the report into the response to the London bombings was also published.

These reports show that not just the Home Office, but every department from transport to the environment is now focused on security, and they set out what has been done and still must be done immediately to learn the lessons and meet the scale of the challenge we face.

The Treasury`s role is to take the lead in targeting terrorist finance and abuse of the global capital system.

On August 11th we froze the assets of 19 of those suspects arrested in the alleged terror plot within 24 hours - in place before the banks opened the morning after the arrests.

This was the most expeditious and most comprehensive asset freeze the Treasury has undertaken.

In total here in Britain since September 11th almost 200 accounts have been frozen linked to over 100 organisations with suspected connections to Al Qaeda.

In 2005 alone our requirements to report suspicious activity saw banks and other businesses report over 2,000 suspicious potential terrorist transactions with 650 leading to detailed investigations resulting in not just the seizure of cash thought to be destined for   terrorism in Iraq but  the tracking down of  individuals wanted for terrorist charges and not just here but overseas.

In addition to denying terror suspects funds, forensic accounting of transaction trails across continents has been vital in identifying threats, uncovering accomplices, piecing together command structures, and ultimately providing evidence for prosecution. Most recently, forensic accounting techniques have tracked an alleged terrorist bomb maker, using multiple identities, multiple bank accounts and third parties and third countries to purchase   bomb making equipment and tracked him to and uncovered an overseas bomb factory.

The background is, of course, a globalisation that now offers the potential for instant communication and transfer of information, but also for its subjugation to criminal purposes.

Whereas once, influence was carried by word of mouth and through books and newspapers, today the internet and 24 hour media allow access to a global audience " with examples of course of young people being radicalised solely by contact with the internet. And we must also confront a growing tide of those seeking to corrupt and exploit this new international marketplace and the freedoms it brings " from drugs, counterfeit goods and people trafficking, to organised crime, fraud and terrorism. And at all points we must meet this new international criminality with new policing security and intelligence measures " and one such area is the international acquisition of finance for supporting terrorism.

And following specific announcements this morning by the Economic Secretary to the House of Commons, I am able to explain today how, as we review our work, the Treasury are developing a comprehensive and increasingly proactive framework that will mean at all times we will be able to act quickly in support of the police and the security authorities in rooting out  terrorist finance.

Our aim is simple: just as there be no safe haven for terrorists, so there be no hiding place for those who finance terrorism.

What the use of fingerprints was to the 19th century, and DNA analysis was to the 20th century, so financial information and forensic accounting has come to be one of today`s most powerful investigative and intelligence tools available in the fight against crime and terrorism. And Ministers have been examining in detail how we can deploy it in the fight against terrorist extremists.

By putting to work the most modern of forensic accounting techniques and bringing the expertise of the private sector - the accountancy, law and financial sectors - together with the public sector, we can create what some will call a modern `Bletchley Park` with forensic accounting of such intricacy and sophistication in tracking finance and connections that it can achieve, for our generation, the same results as code breaking at the original Bletchley Park did sixty years ago.

And in particular we can address directly three of the most dangerous sources of terrorist finance - the abuse of charities, the abuse of money service businesses and the abuse of financial transactions:

  • We know that many charities and donors have been and are being exploited by terrorists. And all allegations of possible abuse are being examined. On August 24th, to take one example, the Charity Commission launched an enquiry into the charity `Crescent Relief` and froze its bank accounts. But it is important to look at the whole sector so that dubious charities are rooted out and good charities protected from abuse. At the end of the year we will publish a report on our review.
  • We are reviewing bureaux de change, cheque cashers and money remitters " legitimate services but also, in instances, known to be open to abuse as a source of terrorist finance. So we will introduce a licensing system, more stringent requirements for firms to keep records, and tougher action against non-compliance.
  • And we are consulting now on new proposals against money laundering - a risk-based approach to ensure that legitimate businesses are not penalised, but at the same time a tough approach focusing attention on our new priorities.
  • We will also target the financial transactions of terror suspects operating in the UK. In July we announced we would restrict the payment of any benefits made to listed terror suspects and their households to ensure they are not diverted to terrorism. Just in the past few days this policy was upheld by the High Court in a Judicial Review.

We will go further.

Tomorrow the Privy Council will lay before Parliament a new terrorism order which will give the Treasury the power to stop funds reaching anyone in the UK suspected of planning terror or engagement with terror.

And today Ed Balls, the Economic Secretary, has announced that for the first time we will use closed source evidence where it is necessary to take preventative action to freeze assets. This means acting on the basis of classified intelligence. But I am mindful that while it is essential to be able to act quickly using all sources of information, the British way is to ensure that Parliamentary accountability must be enhanced as we do so. To create a line of Parliamentary accountability and to ensure and be seen to ensure there is no arbitrariness in what we do, we will put in place a Special Advocate procedure to ensure a fair and consistent hearing of cases and report to Parliament quarterly on the operation of the system.

And, as terrorist finance operates on a global scale, we know that we are only as strong as our weakest links.

So we will build on the action taken under our Presidencies of the G7 and EU last year. In Singapore we, the G8 and IMF, reaffirmed that the international community will continue to be vigilant.

The new US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and I - and Ministers of both our administrations - have discussed how the UK and US can show the way internationally in a proactive and effective terrorist finance framework.

We will use Britain`s Presidency of the Financial Action Task Force next year to promote our proactive approach and to hold to account those countries who are undermining this international effort through insufficient terrorist financing controls. And I have written today to EU Finance Ministers to ask they review all aspects of their frameworks " including cross border cooperation and the introduction of the most modern forensic accounting techniques " to ensure there is never any weak link in Europe`s front against terrorist finance.

back to top

Identity and border controls

The purpose of our forensic accounting is to enhance our ability to identify terror suspects and stop the flows of money on which they rely before they have the chance to strike. To do so we must be able to prove their identity. Yet increasingly terrorists are adopting ever more sophisticated methods of identity fraud both to obtain money and to pursue terrorist action.

Typically, over the last few years, the major terrorist suspects arrested had multiple identities, with some having up to 50 identities.

It is not possible to comment on current court cases. But we should recall that one September 11th hijacker used 30 false identities simply to obtain credit cards and amass a quarter of a million dollars of debt. And in total identity theft alone costs the UK economy in excess of £1.7 billion a year.

People rightly demand we must protect their money, their safety and their rights to access public services - and most crucially protect their identities against them being stolen and misused.

The private sector are responding. Where once we used signatures, birth certificates and now PIN codes to pay for products in supermarkets, enter buildings, access their phone, email, computer, and bank accounts, we will soon be able to efficiently and conveniently use both digital scanning of fingerprints and digital scanning of the unique patterns in the iris of the eye.

Computer companies are already developing the most sophisticated fingerprint technology to control access to computers.
In California supermarket shoppers are paying with a finger-scan at the check out.
Now an American company has developed a safe that can be installed in the home that is opened using your fingerprint. 
And this month a new library is due to open in Japan using palm-vein technology for book check-outs.

In the public sector, biometrics " not just fingerprints, but iris recognition - are already in use in our border controls, as we strengthen the powers and surveillance capability of our border guards and security officers and giving them the technology they need.

A trial programme of iris recognition is already underway, with 1,000 people enrolling each week at Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester. And we are now moving to the next stage - this week expanding the piloting of instantaneous checking of fingerprints overseas - so rather than having to deal with them when they get here, we can stop people travelling under false identities before even embarking for Britain.

In this new environment we need to have in place the best systems for knowing who is coming in and out of our country and for assuring each citizen that their identity is their own and not abused by someone else. So we will move towards an integrated electronic border security system, linking biometric passports and visas with electronic checks on entry and exit - helping us track and intercept terrorists and criminals, seeking to prevent them, stop illegal immigration and increasing the safety of all legitimate travellers.

And I believe that most people agree that if there are acceptable safeguards to protect civil liberties in these areas, there are advantages in a national identity scheme that could not just provide a common, fraud resistant, proof of identity --rather than repeating and relying on an ad hoc mixture of checks on birth certificates, passports, driving licenses, PIN numbers, signatures and passwords and help us disrupt terrorists and criminals traveling on forged or stolen identities - but, more fundamentally, protect each citizen`s identity and prevent it being forged or stolen. 

Building in full protections for our privacy and civil liberties, John Reid and I are also determined that we should fully harness the power and value of this technology - through a new partnership between public and private sectors.

And I can state today that the public-private forum I set up which is led by Sir James Crosby, former Chief Executive of HBOS - will report to the Home Secretary and me at the time of the Budget. It will report in particular on banking, retail, transport and outsourced business services - and in each of these areas will suggest how, by working together, we join up systems for verifying identities and protect against theft and reduce inconvenience; and we develop secure multi-channel communications so that people can interface with both businesses and public agencies on-line and by telephone as well as by post or in person.

And as Sir James examines these issues we will also have to deal with any potential conflicts of interest that might arise when public and private partnerships are introduced and ensure that civil liberties of individuals are protected.

back to top

Pre-charge detention

Our comprehensive spending review will also examine the resources and support we give to the police, security and intelligence services in the fight against terrorism. And, as we examine the resources available to services upon whom we rely we, as a Government, must be clear also about what, in the new environment, are the powers they need.

Back in February, I argued that those who opposed increasing the maximum length of pre-charge detention, were mistaken. I explained why I thought an extension was justified.

We need to be realistic that the new terrorist threat - multi-continental in its reach, multi-dimensional in its operation - has changed the rules of the game - and so changed how we need to protect ourselves against it.

Today, we face terrorists who act without warning, who can take the lives of thousands in one act - and who are willing not only to take the lives of others, but their own as well. So we cannot now risk waiting for someone to commit an act. Indeed it would be a failure of our duty to protect people to do so.

In the past we could think of catching culprits `red handed`, in the act of criminality. Today the authorities have to consider whether we can afford to let events move near to that conclusion.

That is why preventative control orders - to prevent, restrict or disrupt involvement in terrorist activity - are a necessary part of our approach and the debate about their future is so important.

The police and security service do have a duty to take preventative action and may have to intervene early.

And this carries with it serious implications for arrests, charging and detaining.

But we also have global operations involving the internet, mobile telephones, false identities and bank accounts of a complexity and sophistication we have not seen before - with the result that investigations also are more complex, depend on more international co-operation and inevitably take longer.

I myself first came across this as a Treasury Minister addressing the issuing of banning orders for financial transactions of terrorists where we were dealing with a sophisticated use by a single individual of many identities many passports and many bank accounts and transfer usually in many countries and over more than  one continent. But the police investigation of potential terrorist activity is even more complex than that.

When I spoke about this in February I used the example of the investigation into the July 7th bombings - where the race against time involved access to sites which could not be entered safely for days or even weeks, hundreds of computer encryptions which had to be deciphered, and thousands of phone and email trails which needed to be pursued across countries and continents.

The same applies to the alleged August 10th plot. So far nearly 70 homes, business and open spaces have been searched. As the Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Peter Clark, said, as well as bomb making equipment, 200 mobile phones, 400 computers, and a total of 8,000 CDs, DVDs and computer disks, containing 6,000 gigabytes of data have been seized . Given that much of the data has to be searched internationally as well as nationally " and yet the police have to intervene early before the terrorist act - it is obvious that police investigations often need more time.

We have in place a new regime which allows pre-charge detention up to 28 days. But I believe that if the evidence shows it necessary to go beyond 28 days we should be prepared to do so.

The concern all of us have is of course the possibility of arbitrary detention - and so procedures have to be put in place to avoid that. But the safeguards lie not in measures that make it impossible for police to complete an investigation into terrorist activities - something which would not protect but harm all our civil liberties - but in ensuring that the rights of a person detained are protected through drawing upon our traditions of impartial judicial oversight and Parliamentary accountability.

It is right that a judge cannot agree an extension beyond 14 days unless he is satisfied that continued detention is necessary, and unless he is also satisfied that the investigation is being carried out as quickly as possible.

At the heart of our legislation is also the requirement that those detained must be able to make written representations to the judge to contest their continued detention. If the judge is not satisfied at any stage of the process, the person must be released.

I believe that in any subsequent legislation, Parliament should reassure itself that this oversight is working and improve it if necessary, and to ensure even greater accountability, there be a right of appeal to the High Court.

But it is, in my view, right also that, if we did go beyond 28 days, we give the independent reviewer of terrorism law the explicit power to look at and to report on any case which goes beyond 28 days without charges.

Of course, the independent reviewer of our terrorism legislation already has the overall capacity to monitor the use of this power and report any concerns. But I believe our traditions of Parliamentary accountability would be enhanced if this work of monitoring also forms the basis of an annual report to Parliament: a report that as - John Reid and I have agreed and as he will examine in his security review - scrutinises each of the cases where there has been the longest detentions and the explanations for this, and a report that can be fully debated within Parliament to reassure people that there has been no arbitrary exercise of power.

How we protect people`s liberty has to change to meet new security needs, but the protection of people`s liberty must be enhanced too. It will lie in strengthened Parliamentary accountability and independent oversight of the authorities.

As a government, we would like an all-party consensus on the way forward and will continue to seek it. It is difficult for opponents to say that the changed terrorist threat is not serious enough to justify change in our laws. To have to minimise the severity of the changes in the world around us to justify the status quo is a disappointing failure of leadership. By preserving the primacy of the courts backed up by rights of appeal and thus proper oversight and, in the end, by upholding Parliamentary accountability, I believe we protect our civil liberties while acting decisively in the security interests of the country.

back to top

Cultural action against terrorist extremism

It is by fulfilling the responsibilities I have as Chancellor to seek to deny terrorists finance that I have become even more aware not just of the scale, complexity and sophistication of terrorist activity but  its long term nature as a threat, bringing home to me  the bigger, deeper questions we all have a duty to address.

The threat from Al Qaeda did not begin on September 11th - indeed the attacks on the twin towers were being planned as the United States was taking action with Europe to protect Muslims in the former Yugoslavia, and was leading the most concerted drive in decades for peace in the Middle East.

Nor will the threat end with the withdrawal of international forces from Iraq and Afghanistan. It is a totalitarian terrorism founded on animosity to our values.

To root out terrorism we are rightly investing in our military and security forces and our police and intelligence services both at home and abroad - doubling our investment in security since September 11th to £2 billion a year.

And I want to pay tribute again to our police and security and intelligence services for their dedication in protecting us here in Britain, and our armed forces for their extraordinary bravery across the world:  public servants whose courage is legendary, and whose work is magnificent - the best in the world - and daily they make us very proud.

And it is right that our armed forces should be properly rewarded. Already British forces do earn significantly more than their US counterparts and the majority of international forces. But the Secretary of State for Defence and I have agreed that we can go further and increase the award our forces receive when on operational service in the most dangerous conflict zones. This will seek to ensure that the extraordinary job our forces do and the risks they take and the danger they endure is once again acknowledged, making them amongst the best paid of any armed forces in the world.

Because of our armed forces` courage, alongside America and other allies, since September 11th, many of Al Qaeda`s leaders have been killed or captured, and their bases closed down.

Afghanistan has had its first full elections for decades, with millions of women voting and millions of girls back in school.

The Iraqi people are starting to see Al Qaeda for what they are - not interested in Iraq`s future, but trying to exploit the fragility of its emerging democracy and the presence of international troops to spread its extremist message.

What we confront is not a conventional fight, and therefore cannot be won by conventional methods. So it is right that we tackle not just terrorism but the roots of terrorism. Nothing can justify terrorists` acts. But as we tackle injustices that breed resentment we must match our security strategy with an economic and political strategy too. And it is by showing we are not just fighting against terrorism, but fighting for peace and prosperity for all people across the world, of whatever religion, that we will extinguish the heat that ignites the extremists` fire.

The architects of the peace after 1945 knew, in the words of Dean Acheson, that peace and prosperity were indivisible.

First and most urgently we must act to put the Middle East road map back on track - and we must underpin that political road map with an economic road map, to show that we can address the widespread problems of poverty and unemployment and that politics can deliver for people in terms of jobs and hope for the future. I will continue to visit the region to push this economic agenda forward, supporting Tony Blair and Margaret Beckett in their wider efforts - because securing peace in the Middle East will not only offer lasting peace and prosperity to Israelis and Palestinians alike, but do more than almost anything else to address the greatest grievance among moderate Muslims over the world.

But we now know also that Africa is home to a growing number of Al Qaeda cells. It is also the source of new immigration to Europe - men and women seeking a relief from their poverty by journeying to benefit from European prosperity in the absence of the African prosperity we should be helping to create. So with the equivalent of a modern Marshall Plan for Africa, we must work with the continent`s leaders " and the next stage is our "education for all children` initiative, together showing that globalisation is not a cause of injustice and poverty but a force for justice on a global scale. 

But above all, we need to do far more to isolate extremists who practice terrorist violence from moderates of all religions. What gives us hope that we will succeed is the fact that the values that respect the dignity of all individuals unite peaceful religions across the world, and that they can form the basis of a shared understanding about how to secure a prosperous peace for all, no matter to what religion individuals adhere.

We should remember from 1945 the united front against Soviet communism involved not only deterrence through large arsenals of weapons, but a cultural effort on an extraordinary scale.

Newspapers, journals, culture, the arts and literature sought to expose the difference between moderation and extremism.

Foundations, trusts, civil society and civic organisations - links and exchanges between schools, universities, museums, institutes, journals, books, churches, trades unions, sports clubs, societies - all formed a front line in this cultural effort.

And it was by power of argument, by debate and by dialogue that over time we changed attitudes and then changed systems.

And so today the isolation of the extremists " and ultimately the end to terror "depends not just upon armies and treaties alone.

Success depends on what no alliances, no covenants, no charters, no laws can exclusively deliver permanently on their own.

It depends upon winning hearts and minds " the day-in day-out, week-in week-out month-in month-out, year-in year-out continuing and ever deepening work of isolating and confronting extremes, tearing down old prejudices, building new understandings and changing attitudes and views.

This is a debate as much for our communities as for our Parliaments; as much for community leaders as for politicians; as much for each individual place of worship as for national and international faith leaders - and for all the institutions that represent the moderate majority not to ignore extremism but to confront it.

By showing we are not engaged in a war against any religion - and instead building a common humanity between moderates of all faiths in all parts of the world " our aim must be to tackle head on those who seek to drive a divide between the great religions of the world.

So today we have to argue not just against terrorism and terrorists but also against the violent perversion of a peaceful religious faith. And we have to recognise that the very existence of the internet and the exchange of ideas across it means that it is not only right now but necessary to engage these ideas openly and win the global battle for hearts and minds.

And it is an illusion to believe that if we leave today`s extremists alone, they will leave us alone. Unless moderates can establish themselves at the centre of their communities and faith, extremists could grow in strength and influence. To leave them alone on the ground they might leave us alone would be an unpardonable error.

That means not just the security measures I have outlined but taking the debate, discussion and dialogue to all countries and all communities through media, culture, arts, and literature - in partnership with moderate Muslims and moderates everywhere " as we tackle at root the causes that risk driving people into the extremists hands.

It means we must seek to show that while we are engaged in a war against extremism, we are not engaged in a war against Islam.  It means we must build on the conferences we are now holding with Muslim thinkers, encouraging debate and dialogue not just among community leaders but among young people, making it easier for them to make links with other young people with shared experiences and interests across the country and across the world.   

Within Britain the debate that Jack Straw has encouraged about the veil will continue. In the wider debate about diversity and integration, we should also emphasise what we in Britain need to have in common " the responsibilities we should accept as citizens, as well as the rights. I believe all who live in this country should learn English, understand our history and culture, take citizenship tests and citizenship ceremonies. And I believe that we should now focus on making sure that the quality and scope of citizenship and history education in all our schools give young people a basic understanding of the values and traditions of what it is to be British.

Internationally, we must work not just with our allies but with independent international organisations that are dedicated to reform and democracy.

And it is our duty to support them, to provide funds where necessary, to open doors where necessary, to identify obstacles and remove them.

Supporting civil society projects and scholarships in the Middle East, North Africa and across the world is important. Much is done by the Foreign office directly. But the work of the British Council is of great importance too and I applaud the work the British Council does

Today we invest, as much as £100 million a year in supporting civil society in these areas but if there is more than can be done, we must do it.

back to top

The BBC World Service and its website is a trusted source of news and information for millions across the world. BBC World TV can be seen in 270 million homes in more than 200 countries. The BBC`s Arabic TV channel begins next year.  The BBC`s proposed Farsi TV Channel is an editorially independent specialist TV service for the people of Iran. And I am pleased to announce that we are making available the resources for this today.

But there is a further challenge not just for us, but for all of us across Europe to address and meet.

Al Qaeda`s message " it`s single narrative - aims to have global resonance " from Afghanistan to the streets of Britain, from the huts and slums of Africa and Asia to every one of the richest cities in every industrial country - a narrative that purports the West is waging a war on your religion, seeks to murder your people, steal your resources and corrupt your culture; that it is your duty and noble cause to defend your people against this attack.

This single narrative must be met by a clear headed and unified response.

We must expose the hatred that drives the extremist ideology; expose that this is not a clash of civilisations nor of cultures; expose that on the one side stands all civilised societies founded on the dignity of all people of all faiths and on the other an extremist violent ideology where murderers take innocent lives for notoriety.

More than ever we need a unified response - to match the single narrative of the extremists and the terrorist networks

Indeed it is only by standing up for our values, by winning the battle for ideas, by showing the values of liberty, democracy, and justice are the best ways of respecting the dignity of all individuals that we will prevent the indoctrination of future generations of terrorists.

But too often from across the democratic world an uncertain trumpet sounds.

If Europe and America cannot come together with a clear and common message, and then together work more closely with all continents, then this weakness will in itself be a tacit encouragement to terrorism.

Of course there have been disagreements within and between countries on matters as important as the war in Iraq " and in democracies there will always be so.

But enduring American values and enduring European values both have, at their heart, the pursuit of liberty, democracy and justice as essential to the dignity of all individuals and all peoples. And what unites us is far far greater and far more profound and fundamental than what divides us.

So just as we did in the last century, and just as we did after September 11th  when America and Europe stood shoulder to shoulder, America and Europe need to come together with to agree yet again that our shared values are the common ground on which we build " and that together we must work with all countries, all continents and all faiths of the world to isolate terrorist extremists and prevent the indoctrination of a new generation of terrorists.

And such is the importance of the values that we share in common that there should be no future for anti-Americanism in Europe. Indeed we should explicitly state that American values and European values are as one in counter posing to extremist ideology that glorifies terrorism the values of liberty, democracy and justice as essential to the dignity of all individuals " and we should be emphatic in saying that that we will work more closely together with all countries, all continents, and all faiths to win this generation-long struggle of hearts and minds.

And closer co-operation between America and Europe in addressing the roots of terrorism should lead to practical new approaches to isolating extremism which I plan to propose, and across continents encouragement for the broadest possible dialogue of all the faiths.


I started by saying that we face global challenge that must be met globally, with all the means at our disposal: military, security, political, economic and cultural.
Over nine years as Chancellor my aim has been that where there is instability there be stability. But we know also that there is another greater challenge-where there is insecurity there should be security, where there is fear, freedom from fear. And such is the threat that the message must go out: we will not yield, relax, rest, ever become complacent or lower our guard.

Our priority as a government: a Britain strong in security, robust in our resolve, resilient in any response, so that as a nation we both defeat terrorism and isolate violent extremism wherever we confront it and whatever its source.

Source: MI5